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Joy Lozaria Lungu | Zambia | Don’t Backdown!

Growing up it was my desire to always change things around me and part of this was my family’s educational background or history. I’d heard of stories that were told of my uncles or aunties who dropped out of school and I found it unfortunate because of circumstances that surrounded the turnout of events in their lives. But I always told myself, that was not going to be me and so with God on my side of course. It was a fight I was willing to put up and I wanted a University degree in my family. And so, I accelerated through high school excellently and it gave my parents so much joy. Every time I move to a new grade after an exam, she would dance and cry in gratitude to God. My dad was always a cheerleader who said to me “Thank you”for choosing to do what I’ve never done. When the time came to go to University, I wanted to study at the highest institution in my country, the University of Zambia and after many challenges I got acceptance and I graduated this year as a first generation graduate in my family.

What were the biggest initial hurdles and how did you overcome them?

Being rejected entry into University was very devastating because I was adamant about what I wanted to achieve in life. It was hard. But I decided to try again by appealing via a letter to the dean, explaining to them why I needed this so much. And yes, I miraculously got admitted. It didn’t end there though, the government of the republic of Zambia gives government sponsorship to University of Zambia students under eligibility. I applied over 5 times and was not given. I really needed this sponsorship but it wasn’t time for me to complain. I decided to pray. Ask God to make a way, as always. He did and my parents were able to afford the fees. I overcame all these barriers and many more because I was able to fight through my present circumstances. It wasn’t about giving up, it was about pushing through and being persistent. I think every person will give up the fight when they feel they are losing. But sometimes even when your strength is done and you know time is ticking and nothing good is coming your way. You must then remember why you started. The objective wasn’t to give in to failure, it was to WIN and emerge VICTORIOUS.

What books are you currently reading? I’m currently reading braving the odds by a phenomenal Zambian author Mizinga Melu she is the CEO of Absa Bank, Zambia and braving the odds tremendously. Did you ever deal with contention from your family and friends concerning your pursuits? How did you handle it? What would you do differently in hindsight? Have you ever walked a journey for the first time and no one else walked on that path before? That was me. What I experienced from family and friends, I would not call it contention. It was always overwhelming support because they held my hand throughout the journey. Even though I didn’t get this from everyone in this journey I must say, some questioned if I would graduate from University. Some comments and sentiments were discouraging but what encouraged me is those who choose to take my hand and walk with me. Those who dared to believe it was possible. What would you say was the single most influential factor in your success? I'm a fighter. I love to win. I don’t back down. My single most influential factor for my success is the ability never to give up and give in. I told myself I am not ordinary. I’m extraordinarily made. I didn’t come on earth to be a failure, instead I am a success. And even on days when my future looked blurry I fought through so I could see more clearly. I didn’t give in to failing or the fact that nobody pursued what I wanted. I didn’t allow discouragement to bring me down. I didn’t allow anything to get in the way of possibility and positivity in life. I didn’t dare give up on my dreams. What do you know today that you wish you would have known when you first got started? That I can do ALL things. I wish I knew earlier that I am capable, I am able, I can do anything and everything if I set my mind on it. What advice would you give to an upcoming youth or talents locally and internationally? Believe in yourself, no matter what people say. Just do you!! The outcome of your life is solemnly dependent on YOU not them, so why believe them. Believe in yourself instead and you will be shocked at what you are capable of achieving!


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